District of South Northants
County of Northamptonshire
Yardley Gobion Parish Council
As you will all know the Parish Council should be thinking about the impact that widespread infection could have on the Council’s ability to conduct its business. All Councillors and Council Staff should take a normal common-sense approach to hygiene precautions.
The work of the Parish Council will continue with its day to day running under delegated powers. This would mean that the Parish Clerk would continue with any work that is required to be done on behalf of the Parish Council. The Clerk will liaise with all Parish Councillors where necessary, via either telephone or the Parish Council email system.
In response to the Covid-19 outbreak in the UK and in the event that it is not possible to convene meetings of Yardley Gobion Parish Council in a reasonable time, the Parish Clerk shall have delegated authority to make decisions on behalf of Yardley Parish Council where such decisions cannot reasonably be deferred and must be made in order to comply with a commercial or statutory deadline. The delegation does not extend to matters expressly reserved to the Parish Council in legislation or in its Standing Orders or Financial Regulations. Any decisions made under delegation must be recorded in writing and must be published in accordance with the relevant regulations. This delegated authority ceases upon the first meeting after the suspension of the Parish Council.
Many aspects of the Parish Council business are discretionary and can be deferred if necessary. However several things that must be done by law and have a statutory deadline, these are:
Holding the Annual Parish open meeting on a date between 1st March and 1st June inclusive.
Holding the annual meeting of the Parish Council in May.
Approving for signature the Annual Governance and Accountability Return (AGAR) before 1st July.
If the Government advises or mandates that local authority meetings should not take place, it is thought that Government will deal with the associated consequences such as statutory time frame.
These Statutory Responsibilities may change due to the current emergency.
The Clerk and I will continually monitor the situation and when any changes arise we will notify all our Parish Councillors.
Our Clerk will notify all Parish Councillors in respect of any planning applications. At which point Councillors will review the applications and note their comments. The Clerk will then contact each individual Councillor for their opinions on each application. The Clerk will then respond to the Planning Office at South Northants Council as a consensus of opinions of the Parish Councillors.
After long deliberations I feel that it is sensible and a necessary step to suspend all Parish Council Meetings as of now and they will be suspended until further notice. This decision has been taken (not lightly) in the interests of all our Parish Councillors, Parish Clerk and members of the Public due to the serious nature of the coronavirus outbreak.
Hope this keeps you informed of what we are trying to do to.
Once again I am very sorry that I have had to take this decision but I think this is the best approach to try and contain this bad situation. Hope you all keep safe through these difficult situation.
Chair, Yardley Gobion Parish Council.